VARIOUS quarters are pleased at the prospect of seeing the identification and arrest of more big-time drug manufacturers and traffickers through modern technology.
But Congress must first authorize wiretapping in cases involving violations of Republic Act (RA) No. 9165, otherwise known as the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.
That’s why Senator Panfilo “Ping” M. Lacson, a former chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and a graduate of the Philippine Military Academy, filed Senate Bill (SB) No. 48.
If SB No. 48 is enacted into law, Lacson said “we can intercept and record criminal communications of suspected big-time drug lords,” many of them Chinese nationals.
PNP chief Director-General Ronald “Bato” M. dela Rosa and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) head Isidro S. Lapeña said wiretapping will boost the government’s anti-drug drive.
Lapeña, a member of PMA Class 1973 and a native of Urdaneta City in Pangasinan, said wiretapping enables lawmen to reach the structure and hierarchy of drug syndicates.
When he assumed the top political post of the land, President Rodrigo R. Duterte vowed to wipe out the drug menace in this impoverished and graft-ridden country of more than 100 million people.
And last week, the hard-hitting and articulate Chief Executive from Mindanao declared anew: “I will do it until the last pusher is out of the street, and the last drug lord is exterminated.”
Admittedly, wiretap investigations are very expensive and time-consuming.
But law enforcement authorities believe that wiretapping plays a crucial role in transforming the Philippines into a drug-free country.